Beleaguered boss Craig Harrison has been given even further headaches after Lewis Hawkins joined the growing list of Hartlepool United absentees.

The midfielder made a battling return to the Pools starting XI at Workington in the FA Trophy on Saturday, only to be sent off in stoppage time. Hawkins has been handed a one-match ban and will sit out Saturday’s crucial National League home match with Maidenhead United. The 24-year-old went into referee Simeon Lucas’s notebook on the hour for a foul and when he lunged in at the death to concede a free-kick on half-way to prevent the home side breaking, he did not even wait to see the official produce the second yellow card.

Harrison felt the decision was “harsh”, though, in truth, the ref could have done little else. With it being two yellow cards, Pools are unable to appeal, so they can’t get Hawkins off the suspension, as they did last week with the red card Nicky Deverdics received at Dover the previous Saturday.

“Obviously, Hawksy getting sent off does not help,” said Harrison. “I’m not sure, with a minute of the game to go is that really a yellow card?”

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